X-ray emitting structures in the Vela SNR: ejecta anisotropies and progenitor stellar wind residuals
Context. The Vela supernova remnant (SNR) shows several ejecta fragments (or shrapnel) protruding beyond the forward shock, which are most likely relics of anisotropies that developed during the supernova (SN) explosion. Recent studies have revealed high Si abundance in two shrapnel (shrapnel A and G), located in opposite directions with respect to the SNR center. This suggests the possible existence of a Si-rich jet-counterjet structure, similar to that observed in the SNR Cassiopea A.
Aims: We analyzed an XMM-Newton observation of a bright clump, behind shrapnel G, which lies along the direction connecting shrapnel A and G. The aim is to study the physical and chemical properties of this clump to ascertain whether it is part of this putative jet-like structure.
Methods: We produced background-corrected and adaptively-smoothed count-rate images and median photon energy maps, and performed a spatially resolved spectral analysis.
Results: We identified two structures with different physical properties. The first one is remarkably elongated along the direction connecting shrapnel A and G. Its X-ray spectrum is much softer than that of the other two shrapnel, to the point of hindering the determination of the Si abundance; however, its physical and chemical properties are consistent with those of shrapnel A and shrapnel G. The second structure, running along the southeast-northwest direction, has a higher temperature and appears similar to a thin filament. By analyzing the ROSAT data, we have found that this filament is part of a very large and coherent structure that we identified in the western rim of the shell.
Conclusions: We obtained a thorough description of the collimated, jet-like tail of shrapnel G in Vela SNR. In addition we discovered a coherent and very extended feature roughly perpendicular to the jet-like structure that we interpret as a signature of an earlier interaction of the remnant with the stellar wind of its progenitor star. The peculiar Ne/O ratio we found in the wind residual may be suggestive of a Wolf-Rayet progenitor for Vela SNR, though further analysis is required to address this point.
Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Pub Date:
- May 2021
- ISM: supernova remnants;
- ISM: individual objects: Vela SNR;
- X-rays: ISM;
- Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena
- 10 pages, 13 figures, Accepted to A&